comeback 5000

Photo: Graham Smith


Comeback 5000 at Battersea Park

🏅 A spring treat for athletics fans the Comeback 5000 returns to Battersea Park for an evening of 5K action with a festival feel.  Spectating is free! 

NEWSFLASH: The 2024 Comeback 5000 is a wrap!  Results 👇

Email with ‘Athletics London alerts’ in the subject box to receive confirmation of the 2025 event once announced, plus breaking news of other great athletics events taking place in the capital. 

And in the meantime visit our ATHLETICS section here for other events coming up in or around London.  Including the Night of the 10k PBs, Watford Grand Prix and London Diamond League! 


CONGRATULATIONS to all the athletes who put on a great show under the lights at Battersea Park Millennium Arena in the biggest and best Comeback 5000 to date.

5 open races were followed by an invitational 800m men’s race, the first one held at Comeback 5000.  BUCS indoor champion Jacob Smith stormed through with 150 metres to go to take the win in a time of 1:49.69. 

In the elite women’s race Kate Axford – the defending Comeback 5000 champion – Jenny Nesbitt and Georgia Bell broke clear from the pack at halfway.  With two laps to go, Georgia Bell (pictured below No.240) slowly but surely turned the screw to win in a time of 15:35.24, followed home by Axford in 15:38.82 (completing a Belgrave Harriers 1-2) and Nesbitt in third place in 15:45.69.

The elite men’s race saw Rory Leonard (main picture above, tracking his teammate and pacemaker for the night Scott Beattie) put in a superb front-running performance to take the win in a meeting record and personal best time of 13:29.54.  Leonard was chased home by James Gorley (13:42.28) and Ellis Cross (13:43.95) who completed the podium places.   

Check out the Graham Smith Photography website here for a full gallery of pictures capturing a memorable night of athletics at Battersea Park.

Photos: Graham Smith


Comeback 5000 returns for 2024 after a memorable 2023 outing.  Last year in the elite women’s race, Belgrave Harriers’ Kate Axford won in 15:49.79.  Axford held off a strong finish from Herne Hill Harriers’ Georgie Grgec, who finished in second.  Aldershot, Farnham and District’s Amy Griffiths completed the podium places.

In the men’s elite race Zak Mahamed put on a superb exhibition of front-running to go one better than 2022 – when he finished second to Olympian Ben Connor – and take first place in a time of 13:47.43.  Central AC’s Benn MacMillan was second.  Andrew Milligan, who made the trip over to Battersea from Belfast, finished in third.  Watch all the race action back from 2023 below.  

This year’s Comeback 5000 once again features an action-packed night of racing.  As an official World Athletics ranking points event, performances at this event are eligible for GB for selection for the European Athletics Championships in Rome (taking place 7-12 June) and the U20 World Athletics Championships in Lima, Peru (taking place 27-31 August).

👀 READ ON for our ‘ones to watch’, the full race timetable and how you can be there!  And watch all the races back 👇

2024 COMEBACK 5000

Organised by Meet Directors Lloyd Kempson and Steve Gardner and hosted by Belgrave Harriers, Comeback 5000 at the Battersea Park Millennium Arena is set to feature some of Great Britain’s top runners.

Twelve and a half laps of the track is the 5K distance that parkrun has made familiar to many, and today’s event offers a great opportunity to get up close up and personal with elite athletes as they take on the distance in the capital.  

Racing starts at 6.15pm with graded open races for club runners before concluding with the men’s and women’s elite races – a total of seven races in all, seeded by PB and getting progressively faster.  Serious bragging rights are at stake in the men’s and women’s elite races, not to mention qualification times for the European Athletics Championships and U20 World Athletics Championships.  See below for the fastest in the fields by PB. 

With music, beers and a festival vibe to accompany the action, the Battersea Park Millennium Arena is the place to be for the 2024 Comeback 5000 and what promises to be a memorable evening of top-class athletics. 



Jenny NESBITT 15:10
Kate AXFORD 15:34
Beth KIDGER 15:37
Georgia BELL 15:39
Rachael FRANKLIN 15:42
Georgie GRGEC 15:45
Holly DIXON 15:58
Almi NERURKAR 16:00


Tom MORTIMER 13:25
Rory LEONARD 13:31
Ellis CROSS 13:42
Joe WIGFIELD 13:46
Max HEYDEN 13:50
Jack GOODWIN 13:51
James KINGSTON 13:54


🎟️ Spectating at the Comeback 5000 is free.

🕒 Full race timetable as follow:

Race 1 at 6.15 pm ~ Race 2 at 6.40pm ~ Race 3 at 7.03pm ~ Race 4 at 7.26pm ~ Race 5 at 7.48pm 

Invitational Men’s 800m at 8.10pm.

Elite Women’s race at 8.20pm (Pace 15:25 or 15:15 if demand for Euro standard).

Elite Men’s race at 8.45pm (Pace 13:40 or 13:20 if demand for Euro standard).

🚊🚗 Travel tips: Travel by public transport is recommended.  The nearest station to the track is Battersea Park railway station (served by trains from London Waterloo and Clapham Junction), a couple of minutes walk from the park.  Battersea Power tube station, on the Northern Line, is a 5 minute walk away.  The 156 and 344 buses also stop very near to the park.  Plan your journey using the Transport for London website.  On-street parking is available in roads surrounding the park but note local parking restrictions apply.

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